Tag Archives: gender of child

Gender predictions

Background: Informant is a Mexican-American mother of 3. Her knowledge of this gender prediction comes from her mother.

Main Piece:

Informant: When I was pregnant with my second child, everyone told me I was having another boy. They said my stomach was “carrying low”, which is an indicator of a boy. My mom really believed that I was having a boy, but I was certain I was having a girl so my mom told me to try some gender predictions.

Interviewer: What kind of gender predictions?

Informant: She told me I should first, try and see if my son was more attached to me, because if he was then that is suppose to mean I am having a girl. Another prediction she told me was to grab a thin strand of hair and loop it through my wedding ring, and hold to over my palm. If the ring started to circle it means a girl, and if it swings side to side then it means boy.

Interviewer: So did the gender predictions predict boy or girl? Were they right?

Informant: They both pointed to signs of a baby girl. They were right, but I don’t really think they are accurate. I really just had a gut feeling I was having a girl and did the gender predictions for fun.

Context: Interviewer asked informant about gender myths.

Thoughts: Gender predictions do not seem something to take too serious. They seem like, harmless fun games to do. Especially with modern technology their is fast and easy ways to actually find out the gender. I think gender predictions shouldn’t be trusted for accuracy.

Psychic Cat’s Cradle

When my informant was in elementary school, the girls would play a form of cat’s cradle. They would take a circular string and form a cat’s cradle, then ask a girl to choose two fingers on either hand. When she removed those two fingers, the resulting formation of the strings would indicate whether the selector would have a male or female child in the future.¬†According to the informant, the outcome was always male because the resulting string configuration resembled a penis. It was considered a scandalous activity.

There’s a lot at play in this kind of children’s game. Firstly, it incorporates a game popular among young girls. Secondly, it attempts to predict the future, as children like to think about what will happen when they are older. Thirdly, there are stirrings of homeopathic magic, as the resulting configuration of strings resemble a specific genital formation of a male or female, and because the girl selected which fingers to pull to create that formation, it is connected to her in some way. The emphasis on a male result also engages in tabooistic discourse, as kids aren’t supposed to think about or talk about sex, or the genitalia of the opposite sex. Thus, this would be a very exciting game to play as it incorporates a lot of themes common in childhood.